Saturday, April 25, 2020

WeMove Europe are once more collecting signatures. Here is how they explain the problem:

As the European Commission puts together a recovery plan, polluting industries (like airlines and coal-burning power plants) are elbowing their way to the front of the queue to get support - thanks to their enormous lobbying power. They want the biggest piece of the pie… and to use this crisis to weaken environmental standards. The Guardian 2020-04-17 The Guardian 2020-03-31

The economic recovery cannot be at the expense of more pollution: pollution makes coronavirus deadlier. The Guardian 2020-04-21

and their suggested solution:

The Marshall Plan-like scheme [5] to face the economic crisis [must not] replicate the mistakes of the bailouts following the 2008 financial crisis: banks and corporations shouldn’t be saved at the expense of workers, people and the planet.

[5] The Marshall Plan, also known as the European Recovery Program, was a program providing economic aid to Western Europe following the devastation of World War II.

This time it’s different. Just before coronavirus hit the world, the European Commission was in the midst of putting together a European Green Deal: a package of measures to guide Europe’s transition into a just and green economy. The current economic downturn (…) demonstrates the profound need for such a package. (…) 17 EU countries (…) are already pushing the Commission to base the recovery plan on the Green Deal. ( 2020-04-09)

But this master plan needs to be not only fully executed, but also boosted and expanded. If we don’t take action the Commission will only hear from polluting industries in the battle between EU governments on whether to keep the Green Deal or not. They need to hear from citizens too: the Green Deal is the starting point, but it’s far from enough.

Yes, I will give them my voice. But I am afraid that it won’t help much. What we actually need is to subdue the Greedy Giants and to install Unconditional Basic Income.

My idea is that all private corporations must convert into foundations. See here if you wonder how to do this.

For example the above-mentioned airlines and coal-burning power plants will continue to work for their cause as long as they have enough members who support them. If their supporters stop to believe in what they do, they will either find alternative methods, or simply reduce their activity and eventually stop it altogether. There is nothing wrong with stopping an activity that nobody wants. The UBI is important here as a cushion to avoid having humans starve or steal because they lost their job.

You might say that these airlines and coal-burning power plants will continue to invest in publicity and lobby work in order to convince people to support them. Yes, also foundations have a public relations department. They will try to convince others to support them as long as there is a group of people who believes in the idea. But –and that’s the fundamental difference– this struggle will remain within reasonable limits because nobody has a financial reason for keeping the machine running.

Oh, it sounds so easy to me… at least in theory… but it seems that I am the only one with that idea.

Am I really the only one to believe in this?